Malaysian filmmakers shine at Cannes

Malaysian filmmakers shine at Cannes

Indrani Kopal (left) and Thiyagaraja Marimuthu.

25 May – Malaysian filmmakers Indrani Kopal and Thiyagaraja Marimuthu have help put the country's name on the map when it comes to films.

Indrani, a former web producer, won the Best Student Documentary award at Cannes Film Festival 2015's American Pavilion's Emerging Filmmaker Showcase last week.

The 35-year-old's "The Game Changer" was made with a mere budget of USD3,225 (approximately RM6,450), and was screened at Woodstock Film Festival 2014. This is not the first win for the documentary as it also won Best Short Documentary at last year's Harlem Film Festival.

"The Game Changer" follows choreographer Susan Slotnik, whose "Rehabilitation for the Arts" social project is used to rehabilitate male prisoners through dance at the Woodbourne Correctional Facility in New York.

Indrani in her directing mode (Photo source:

There are plans for a sequel, called "The Incarcerated Rhythm", the filmmaker revealed according to The Star.

Indrani, who is on a Fulbright Scholarship, is currently doing her masters in Fine Arts, specialising in documentary studies and production at Hofstra University in New York.

Another Malaysian filmmaker, Thiyagaraja Marimuthu, had premiered his film "Trail", which follows a woman who is dominated by an over-possessive male figure in her life, at the Festival de Cannes Short Film Corner.

The 23-year-old co-wrote the script with the film's main actress, Scheresade Poblet.

"We wanted to write a thriller together, and I wanted to give it a bit more depth and do some character analysis," said the filmmaker as quoted by The Daily Seni. "So it starts out as a feminist type of film, but soon you realize that there's more than meets the eye."

Hailing from Petaling Jaya, though born in Taiping and raised in Klang, the New York Film Academy graduate already has plans for a follow up to "Trail".

He will be working with Oscar nominee Eric Roberts in the yet-to-be-titled sci-fi short.

(Photo source:,

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